Feeling Our Feelings Is Healthier Than Shutting Them Off

Sometimes, it’s not comfortable to feel our feelings.

Sometimes, it’s downright depressing, frustrating, anxiety-provoking and maddening.

Sometimes, it’s uplifting, joyful, and wonderful.

Unfortunately, we don’t always get to choose.

When we decide to feel, we feel it all.

The good, the bad, and the ugly.

Sure, when we’re stuck in the really ugly feelings, we’d rather just not be there.

We’d rather hide, or shut down.

We’d rather retreat behind concrete walls and shut off all of our feelings.

Yet, that does not serve us.

Granted, no one likes to marinate in the deep, dark depressing places that we sometimes go.

Sure, we would all like to feel happy, joyful, uplifted, and energetic all the time.

Yet, we are not built that way.

We are made to feel the full range of emotions.

Dozens of them.

From the highest to the lowest.

When we shut ourselves off from them, we often find trouble.

Perhaps not right away.

Yet over the long run, the unexpressed, unfelt feelings can cause lots of trouble.

From heart-ache to heartburn, and much worse.

It’s not easy, it’s not comfortable, but it sure beats the alternative.

What are you feeling today?

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

By Honoring Another’s Path We Come To Understand Our Own

The desire to help others comes naturally.

When we are connected to our tribe in a loving way, we want to see everyone do well.

Where we get in trouble is when we try to protect people from their own path.

We cannot stop someone else from making their own choices.

We cannot keep people from the consequences of their own actions.

And we certainly cannot prevent people from feeling their own emotions.

Indeed, the more we judge someone else’s path, the more trouble we cause for ourselves.

The more we resist what is, and how others are, the more we suffer.

Our judgments cause ourselves pain.

Our opinions on how someone else’s life is unfolding only keeps us from being present with them.

We may not agree with their choices.

We do not have to accept their actions as ones we would take in their shoes.

Yet the more we honor their own decisions, the more we honor ourselves.

The more we accept life as it is, the more we can be at peace.

We cannot control the entire universe.

We cannot control even one other person’s path.

We can only live our own life and accept how others have chosen to live theirs.

We don’t have to agree with it.

Yet, if we live as an example of how others can live, perhaps one day they will notice.

Perhaps one day they will ask for our help and be open to receive it.

Before that time comes, there is no opening for us.

It is only by honoring a person’s path that we come to understand our own path more clearly.

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

Boldness Builds A Life Free From Fear And Regret

There are many fears in life that bother us.

There’s the fear of being alone.

There’s the fear of loss of a loved one.

There’s the fear of lack of resources.

There are many little fears we live with every day.

The fear of pain.

The fear of missing out.

The fear of being last.

All these fears, when taken to the extreme, are ultimately one big fear.

The fear of death.

The fear of the unknown that lies beyond that singular point at the end of life.

We fear to be alone because in the jungle it can mean death.

We fear to be without resources for that can lead to death as well.

We fear losing others because that only reminds us of our own mortality.

Yes, a healthy fear of death can help us to stay alive.

Yet when our fears become unhealthy and run our lives instead of our passions, we become paralyzed.

To overcome our fear of death is not natural.

To override that most basic instinct takes a lot of internal work.

Yet the more we learn to overcome the small fears, the more we eat away at the big fear.

The surest way to get past our fear of death is to live life fully.

To live with the reminder that every day could be our last.

To live life in bold, outrageous fashion.

Moderation is for monks.

Meekness is for puppies.

Fate favors the bold and being bold diminishes regret.

How can we be bolder in our own lives?

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

There Is A Often A Huge Difference Between Perception And Truth

Our perceptions are tricky things.

We think we know what is going on, yet we only see it from our perspective.

That conversation we had with our partner or the event that happened in another part of the world, is open to our interpretation based on our perceptions.

In order to stay grounded, it is useful to ask ourselves a simple question.

Is that really true?

Is our perception or interpretation of a given situation actually true for other people and not just us?

If a third party, someone not involved emotionally in it, saw or heard what went on, would they have the same conclusion as we do?

What we often think of as an objective fact is rarely so.

The more we question our perceptions and our assumptions, the more we realize how much of our belief is opinion and not fact.

Is that really true?

Even our own thoughts are our interpretations.

That is true for us, and it is true for everyone else.

So it is useful to always double-check when we recognize there are assumptions present.

Is that really true?

The more that question becomes part of our daily practice, the more we can catch ourselves.

The more we catch other people’s assumptions.

The more we can be humble with our opinions.

The more we can connect with people on a deeper level.

Is that really true?

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

The Solution To Misunderstanding Is Greater Communication

How good are we at communicating?

Do we listen more than we talk?

Are we present in our conversations?

Do we make assumptions that get us in trouble?

Inevitably, bad communication leads to misunderstandings.

Learning to avoid assumptions, or at least verify our assumptions is a great place to start.

Communicating more, not less, is the key.

We think we talk enough with people, but do we really?

And speaking with people is not all about us expressing ourselves.

It’s about listening to the other person.

It’s about truly hearing what they are saying without judgment and not being defensive.

When we project our own interpretation of the conversation we often get in trouble.

If we take the time to verify what the other person is trying to convey, we gain more understanding.

And when we make up conversations in our head, that often has nothing to do with reality.

The only sure solution to avoiding misunderstandings is to communicate often.

Communicate frequently.

Communicate more than you think is necessary.

The greater the communication between people, the greater the connection, the greater the understanding.

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

We Are All So Much More Than The Sum Of Our Parts

We have a Heart. Yet we are more than our Heart.

We have a Mind. Yet we are more than our Mind.

We have a Body. Yet we are more than our Body.

We have a Spirit. Yet we are more than our Spirit.

When challenges show up, we normally respond using one of these primary aspects.

We can go to mind and think it through.

We can go to our heart and seek connection and community.

We can go to our body and take the physical actions necessary.

Or we can go to our spirit and meditate and pray on it until a sudden inspiration comes.

We are not limited to how we respond.

And it does not have to be one way over another.

In fact, it does not have to be one way to the exclusion of the others.

We are much more than the sum of our parts.

Indeed, when we call upon all of ourselves, our heart, our mind, our body and our spirit, we can show up more fully to the challenge.

When we are bringing the fullness of our being to any part of our life, our life gets better.

Our relationships get better.

Our business gets better.

Our health gets better.

Our growth blossoms.

So why limit ourselves to be less than we are?

We are Heart, Mind, Body, and Spirit, and so much more.

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

Our Attitudes About Transformation Affect How We Transform

Sometimes transformation is a sudden, jarring, experience.

Sometimes the transformation is a slow, plodding along, experience.

And sometimes, transformation is so minute, so small, that we didn’t even notice it happened.

Almost more important than the event itself is our relationship to it.

Are we anticipating it with impatience and restlessness?

Are we sitting back and just waiting for it to happen to us without our involvement?

Are we so confident it is happening that we don’t even give it a thought and just keep doing what we’re doing?

Transformation takes on many forms and many appearances.

It can be like the caterpillar going inside its cocoon.

It can be like a snake shedding its skin.

Or it can be like a sudden break-up in a relationship.

We are transforming all the time.

We are growing and changing every day.

We are always in the middle of our transformation, which may be why we don’t notice it.

Our attitudes and preconceptions around transformation will color how we transform.

It is common to expect that over-night, instantaneous transformation will happen.

Yet it is more common that the transformation happens little by little, one step at a time, over a long period of time.

What do you expect about your own transformation?

Will it be sudden or slow?

Either way, you’re right.

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

When We Accept That Life Is Perfectly Imperfect We Find Freedom

Life is not about everything going right or the way we expect.

Life is not about getting things perfect and avoiding all mistakes.

Life is not about steering clear of pain and frustration.

Indeed, all of these can help us to grow and be stronger.

Yet so often we would do anything just to avoid being wrong.

It is only in the acceptance that life is perfectly imperfect that we find true freedom.

We find the freedom to be ourselves.

To take chances.

To be joyful even when our choices lead us to a disaster or two.

By releasing our attachment that we are meant to “get it right” all the time that we can learn to just enjoy the ride.

Mistakes are our friends.

Failure is our teacher.

Pain is our messenger.

When we begin to accept that they are all a part of life and there is nothing “wrong” with any of them that we truly start to live.

When we learn to accept whatever life brings us with grace and curiosity that we live with less stress and less anxiety.

It is possible for us to get there.

Not next year or in a decade.

We can be there now.

We can be there by just putting off our judgment of the moment we are in until tomorrow.

And tomorrow we can just put off judging the moment until the next day.

And so on.

Let’s just let go of our desire to label and control things for one day.

That’s all we have to do.

Can we start doing that today?

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

Safety Is About How We Feel Inside Not What Is Going On Around Us

How do we come to a peaceful place inside?

How do we find the tranquility we seek when there is so much chaos in the world?

How do we feel safe when there seems to be so much that is not safe around us?

Feeling safe may be a challenge at times, yet it is possible to achieve when we find our tribe.

The first time we meet a group of people we are all a little bit uneasy.

We’re not sure where or how we fit in.

We don’t know what is expected of us or what to expect of the others.

Yet as we form connections to people individually, we begin to feel more at ease.

It takes time to feel safe in a new situation.

Whether it is a new workplace, a new family, or a new social group.

As we allow ourselves to go through our own process of discovery and exploration of the group, we realize that we do find our equilibrium.

It may not happen as quickly as we would like.

It may not happen in the manner we expect.

Yet when we release ourselves from the expectations and from any timeline, it all goes much smoother.

We connect with one person first. Then another.

Soon we find that we have much more in common with the group then we first thought.

Safety, it turns out, is more about how we feel inside than what is going on around us.

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant

Self-Care Is Essential For Our Own Well-Being And The Well-Being Of Others

We often feel pressure to be of service to others.

Sometimes that works out well.

Other times it wears us down.

If we don’t learn to balance out self-care with service, we can end up with some serious challenges.

It is easy to think of other’s needs and put our own needs to the side.

We feel that if we just show up for others and help them with their challenges we don’t have to worry about ourselves.

Yet that isn’t how things usually work out.

We put ourselves second, or last, and then we have a breakdown while trying to help others.

The breakdown can come in many forms.

It can be physical, it can be emotional, or it can be in our relationships.

What we often don’t understand is that the breakdown occurs exactly because we put our own needs behind that of someone else.

Whether it is a friend, a relative, a partner, or a business, it doesn’t matter.

By not meeting our own needs, by not recognizing that we have to take care of ourselves first, we head down a track that ultimately leads to some kind of breakdown.

The fact that the breakdown occurs is not a bad thing. It is a signal.

It is a signal that we haven’t been operating from a compassionate place and that something needs to change.

Yes, we need to be compassionate to others.

Yet how can we be compassionate to other if we have not yet been compassionate for ourselves?

The breakdown is to show us we need to practice self-care.

Self-care means we have to take care of our own needs in order to have what we need to take care of others.

Practicing self-care is essential for our own well-being as well as the well-being of others.

~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant